Catholic Schools Week 2019

Catholic schools across the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle are opening their doors to families, friends and community members in celebration of Catholic Schools Week 2019.

The vision for Catholic schools in the Diocese is, ‘At the heart of everything there is always Jesus Christ’. This vision is the foundation of the education Catholic schools offer and is the lens through which everything is viewed – the belief that informs and critiques all policies and decisions.

This vision informs the 2019 theme for Catholic Schools Week. ‘Learn, Serve, Belong’, celebrates the connection to the community, the diversity of learning and the supportive and inclusive environment that students experience as part of their Catholic education.

A fundamental part of the journey through Catholic education for students is ensuring they feel a deep sense of being valued, develop a strong sense of self-worth and become well-rounded citizens whose social engagement is informed by the Gospel. This arises by creating a close and supportive school community that develops a sense of belonging for students. This sense of belonging is enhanced by the events, rituals and opportunities within the school which help to build a welcoming and inclusive environment and healthy and positive relationships for all.

Catholic schools support parents, carers and families, who are the primary educators of their children, through this journey. Time and effort is taken to build a close partnership between families and the school community to ensure both feels a sense of welcoming and belonging.

We also celebrate and acknowledge the diversity of learners and learning that takes place for students and teachers across all our schools each day. From early play-based learning that encourages curiosity, creativity and flexibility, to the contemporary and 21st century learning environments of our classrooms that inspire collaboration, problem-solving and self-direction – each student is supported throughout their journey in Catholic education.

As part of their roles as learners students are encouraged to understand their own learning process and understand how to handle and work through the mistakes and challenges they will inevitably face. In both life and learning, it is through these challenges and mistakes that students can learn some of their biggest lessons.

We acknowledge the call to serve and the challenge it brings us to step outside our comfort zone and live within our communities. Service allows us to push the boundaries of individualism, secularism and materialism as the call challenges us to reach outwards from ourselves in mission.

It is through service to others and reaching out to those within our community that we also learn to be respectful and supportive of others and find a place of belonging, as our eyes open to new understandings and experiences. This year we encourage students, staff, family and community members to develop a relationship with their community and show support through action.

With so many activities happening across all schools throughout the week, check out our Catholic Schools Week Events Calendar or contact your local school to make sure you don’t miss out on the chance to get involved in the celebrations and see why so many families choose Catholic education for their child’s school journey.

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Suzanne Fern Image
Suzanne Fern

Suzanne is the Head of Teaching & Learning Services at the Catholic Schools Office.

Gerard Mowbray Image
Gerard Mowbray

Gerard Mowbray is Assistant Director at the Catholic Schools Office, Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.

Louise Gannon rsj Image
Louise Gannon rsj

Louise Gannon rsj is the Diocesan Co-ordinator of Liturgy.

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